The month of March lives up to its reputation from a grazing perspective

​March 2023 has certainly lived up to its reputation of coming in like a lion.

Temperatures have dropped like a stone, resulting in a major fall-off in grass growth right across Northern Ireland.

The recent rains have also impacted negatively on ground conditions. What’s more, a combination of cold temperatures and wet soils will serve to severely reduce the uptake of trace minerals and vitamins by grass plants.

And it’s very likely that this scenario will continue to unfold over the coming weeks.

It's shaping up to be a cold and wet start to the 2023 grazing season.
It's shaping up to be a cold and wet start to the 2023 grazing season.
It's shaping up to be a cold and wet start to the 2023 grazing season.

So what should be the priorities for those farmers looking to get stock out early this year.

Paul Elwood, from HVS Animal Health, takes up that story: “Weather conditions have been atrocious over the past autumn, winter and now early spring. This has led to depleted trace mineral levels in grasses.

“As a consequence, all stock turned out over the coming weeks will benefit greatly if they are drenched with HVS Liquid Gold Cattle now. This action will ensure that essential micro trace minerals and vitamins are fully provided for, once cattle of all ages are at grass.”

He added: “Young beef cattle and dairy stock have tremendous capacity to grow-on, once they are put out to grass: the challenge is that of making sure that all of this potential is realised.”

Paul confirmed the results of extensive trials carried out with young stock drenched with HVS Liquid Gold Cattle prior to turn out. They confirm that additional live weight gains of 9.9 kilos per head can be achieved after just 54 days at grass.

He added: “The difference amounted to an extra 20.4 kilos per head after 104 days. This gain in performance is worth an extra £40 per treated animal. So it is more than significant.”

For trace elements to be available to stock, they must be of high quality and must link up with one or more amino acids or peptides in the rumen, prior to being absorbed through the gut wall into the blood stream. Stock are not ideally equipped to effect this “link up” and a significant proportion of trace elements and vitamins supplied in conventional form, pass straight through the body and are excreted.

Paul continued:“Our Liquid Gold Cattle, Dairy and Sheep range supplies all the micro minerals and essential vitamins required by milking stock, cattle and sheep in a highly available form to help address the short fall of micro minerals in grazing swards.

“The products represent the next generation in chelated mineral and vitamin drenches.”

Paul added that farmers must seek to maximise the performance of their livestock.

“The HVS Liquid Gold range has been developed to meet this specific requirement.The reality is that an animal can only perform to the level of the greatest deficiency or imbalance in its diet. All forage based diets can contain major mineral imbalances and consequently most stock never achieve their genetic potential in terms of growth, fertility, development of immunity etc.”

HVS Liquid Gold Cattle supplies the micro trace minerals of iron, copper, zinc and manganese in a 100% chelated form.

It also contains nucleotides, which act to increase red blood cell numbers, a key factor in determining animals’ ability to grow. Liquid Gold Cattle acts to ensure that young stock at grass are not restricted in terms of meeting their full growth potential.

For further information, contact Paul Elwood on 07831 257319